The multiple recent terrorist attacks in diverse places such as London and California ought to be a warning to the tourism industry that it is entering into a new and dangerous age. In the past, most tourism centers assumed that either they would not be targets of a terrorism attack or that the attack would be against a highly specific and well-known target. Classically it was assumed that we could almost predict which areas would be most prone to terrorism attacks. The prevailing paradigm argued that terrorists were most likely to strike locations that were high on the following scales:
- They were centers where a great deal of economic damage would occur.
- They were centers could generate mass casualties
- They were places that had some form of iconic significance
- They were places that were most likely to be covered by the media.
Scholars and security specialists based this paradigm on attacks such as those in New York, London, and Madrid. The security and tourism industries however did not consider locations such as in the Middle East as being relevant to tourism. Both the multiple incidents in Europe and the United States creates enough anomalies to cause tourism scholars and practitioners to question if the former paradigm does not need revisions and updating. Tourism Tidbits presents this month some of the new realities that tourism professionals need to consider.
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